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take a walk
April 23, 2019

If you're sitting down while reading this, maybe you'll want to take a break.

New research has shown that Americans spend more time sitting than we ever have before, The Wall Street Journal reports. And, as we've been warned before, computers are a main culprit behind our sedentary lifestyles.

A study, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association on Tuesday, found that compared to 2007, data from 2016 reflects an increase in sitting time of about an hour per day for most Americans. The average adolescent now spends 8.2 hours sitting, while the average adult sits for 6.4 hours a day.

The numbers from 2016 point to screen time as a big reason for sitting: 65 percent of people watched TV at least 2 hours per day, and computer use saw a huge uptick as well. 56 percent of children, 57 percent of adolescents, and 50 percent of adults use computers for at least an hour a day outside of school or work.

Excessive sedentary behavior has been linked to a higher risk for heart disease, diabetes, some cancers, or even early death — which makes this study's findings troubling. And while these numbers may seem high, the truth may be even worse. Since the study was based on self-reported surveys, some scientists believe that people are under-reporting their sedentary time. "Most people aren't very aware of how much time they spend sitting," said Keith Diaz, a professor at Columbia University Medical Center. Read more at The Wall Street Journal. Shivani Ishwar

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